Tool Crib Management & Its Role in Lean Manufacturing

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This guest post on Mark Graban’s blog treats an important but often neglected subject. It forgets, however, what I see as the number one problem with tool cribs: operators leaving their work stations to fetch tools. In some machine shops, you see a line of machinists waiting in line at the tool crib while machines and work pieces stand idle.
Instead, in a Lean shop, the tool crib sets up milk runs to pick up worn tools and deliver fresh ones. The tool crib is a support organization with the purpose of supporting production, not disrupting it.

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